The Independent reports:
Plans for future wind farms in Britain could be in jeopardy after a United Nations legal tribunal ruled that the UK Government acted illegally by denying the public decision-making powers over their approval and the “necessary information” over their benefits or adverse effects.
The new ruling, agreed by a United Nations committee in Geneva, calls into question the legal validity of any further planning consent for all future wind-farm developments based on current policy, both onshore and offshore.
But this news does not seem to have reached the SDNPA and WSCC who are in dispute over who should sign off on the plans. The SDNPA, in particular, seems reluctant to approve the current plans on the grounds that they will cause “irreversible damage”. The Argus reports:
Keith Read, deputy director of planning for the South Downs National Park, said: “The SDNPA has significant concerns regarding proposals to build up to 175 wind turbines off the Sussex Coast. The plans would result in up to 420,000m² of disturbance to the national park’s landscapes, including some very sensitive areas such as the Bronze Age monument at Tottington Mount. We have submitted our concerns to the Planning Inspectorate regarding the proposed construction methods for the 14km of cable that would go through the national park.”
[Updated 29th August 2013]